Whether you’re getting the backyard patio furniture ready for your annual cookout or you’re knocking out the spring allergies out of your office furniture, ServiceMaster Elite Cleaning Services can help. It’s important to consider the different types of materials and fabrics furniture can be made of in order to properly clean it. Office furniture chair coverings can vary widely and include leather, knit, vinyl, mesh or woven fabrics. If you have old or vintage furniture, you may not know the exact materials the item is made of and will need to try some spot tests before moving forward with cleaning. When in doubt, call in the professionals at ServiceMaster Elite Cleaning Services in New Orleans. We have the industry knowledge, the proper techniques and the cleaning solutions needed to clean any piece of upholstery so it smells and looks fresh again.

Always Spot Test First

Test an inconspicuous area of the fabric or other material first before applying any type of cleaning solution. Pick an area underneath or otherwise unnoticeable on the piece of furniture so if things go awry, it won’t ruin the look of the item. Test for color fastness or fading in fabrics. For wood finishes, it’s best to first determine the type of finish by rubbing a drop of denatured alcohol onto a small area. If it dissolves the finish, it’s shellac. If it crinkles or cracks, it’s a lacquer finish. If it shows a combination of these symptoms, it’s possibly a combination of shellac and lacquer. However, if it has an oil or wax sealer finish, you’ll simply need to reapply the oil or wax instead of deep cleaning it.

Check for Fabric Codes

When it comes to leather, knits or woven fabrics, it’s always crucial to pay special attention to the manufacturer’s care instructions. All fabric covered office chairs will come with a care tag installed by the manufacturer as a resource for cleaning that piece of furniture. The following fabric care codes apply:

  • W : Use a water-based solution to clean this fabric.
  • S : Use a solvent-based solution to clean this fabric.
  • S/W or SW : You can use either a water-based or a solvent-based solution to clean this fabric.

How to Clean

Fabrics – To start, do a thorough vacuuming, including all crevices. This will remove loose dust, particulates and soil that gather from daily use. Then, choose a water or solvent based cleaner based off the tag’s instructions. Apply with a clean cloth or spray lightly with a spray bottle and clean with the cloth.

Hardwoods – To remove the initial layer of dirt, grime or other soils, use a mild dishwashing solution and warm water. Don’t use too much or saturate the wood, you want to apply the cleaning solution lightly and rub with a clean cloth. If the wood has a shellac or lacquer finish, it can cause a white haze to form. Also notice if you see the finish coming off as you clean. If this is the case, stop immediately. This means the finish itself is damaged and you could potentially damage the wood if you continue.

If the furniture doesn’t respond to the mild cleaning solution, you can try using mineral spirits. Always use this product with gloves and in a well-ventilated area, as it contains some irritants. Use denatured alcohol to remove white water rings. Always apply cleaning solutions, whatever they may be, lightly and with a clean cloth.

If your upholstery continues to look dull, dirty or old, then it’s time to call the experts at ServiceMaster Elite Cleaning Services for deep cleaning techniques. Contact us for cleaning commercial upholstery for your office or residential upholstery in your home and we’ll renew your furniture so you can get back to enjoying it.